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Tom Jones proved he can still rock with
the best of them at the 01 July Concert
for Lady Diana.

I caught the concert for Lady Diana yesterday. It was put on by her sons,
William and Harry, and here in the States it was broadcast in its entirety
on VH-1.

The anticipated thing about this concert was seeing Duran Duran together
again. Unfortunately, they didn't quite live up to my expectations —
they just seemed kind of stale and uninspired. Perhaps they will do better
at next weekend's Live Earth concert.

The concert also featured a bunch of This Years Model types, mediocre
artists who most people won't even remember ten years from now but who
you kind of expect to see at this kind of event — they have to fill the
seats somehow. And from what I've read they had no problem filling the
seats, either — the tickets sold out in 20 minutes.

The really hot set of the day was (hang on to your seat) Tom Jones. He
did an extremely hot run of "I Want Your (Kiss)", and "I Bet You Look
Good on the Dance Floor." Then Joss Stone came out wearing a long-
sleeved mini-dress c. 1971 and totally barefoot and joined Tom for
"Ain't That a Lot of Love." Great stuff, and congrats to Tom for showing
the young ones how to set the bar on what was pretty much a lackluster
day up till that point. Incidentally, Tom Jones is now "Sir" Tom Jones,
along with Elton and Paul and Ringo et al.

Elton John finished the evening off, musically speaking. Everyone kept
wondering whether he would do "Candle In the Wind," which he sang at
Lady Di's funeral and vowed he would never sing again. True to his word,
he didn't perform the song. But he did perform "Tiny Dancer," which was
a good substitute.

Sir Elton John.

"What, me worry?"

The evening finished off with a few closing words from William and
Harry, a really sweet video compilation of Diana when she was a young
girl, and a few words of praise for Diana from Nelson Mandela that had
been taped earlier.

Towards the end of the concert, while they were waiting for Sir Elton to
get his shit together and get on stage, the VH-1 VJs happened to mention
that at the new Wembley stadium that all music had to conclude by 10:30
p.m. due to the fact that the stadium had been built in a residential
neighborhood and was subject to zoning laws. Now I mean no disrespect to
my Brit friends when I say this, but it just seems kinda stupid to build
a kick-ass new stadium that seats 60,000 people in that kind of area
where you have those kinds of limitations. Not only is 10:30 rather
early in the evening to have to conclude things, but musicians aren't
exactly known for getting things going on time or rapping things up on
time. It seems to me it would have been far better to locate the new
stadium out in the suburbs, like they did Heathrow.

Next week is the Live Earth concert, which will be broadcast here on NBC
in prime-time. I imagine it will be the latter half of the show only, given
the number of artists on the docket. As it happens, I am going with my friend
Julie to the local "777" concert here in Spokane. And you know how those things
go, itineraries just seem to get blown out the window for things like that.
Nevertheless I hope to get home to see at least the end of Live Earth — in
particular the reunion of Sting and The Police.

A few rather questionable and perhaps even inappropriate moments aside,
I thought the concert was a good tribute to Diana. And I'm sure it pulled
in quite a chunk of cash for charity, which of course is the most important

The concert also marks William and Harry's first real steps into public
involvement on a large scale. I think it clear from this event that they
will follow the involved activist philosophy of the monarchy set by both
their father and mother. Which bodes good things for the future, I think.

One more thing, and I add this for the historical record. It had been
raining in London for two solid weeks before the concert. And it was
raining the morning of the concert. But just before the concert started
the sun popped out and the skies turned blue with small white puffy
clouds. Even if metaphorically, it seemed that Diana was smiling down
on everyone with that great smile of hers.

As for me, I believe it totally — no metaphor involved.

BFFs — Best friends forever.